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Prime Minister announces stronger enforcement measures as easements resume

The Government has announced a series of tough new enforcement measures targeting the most serious breaches of social distancing restrictions.


Prime Minister Boris Johnson
Prime Minister Boris Johnson announces stronger enforcement measures as easements resume

August 13, 2020: The Government has announced a series of tough new enforcement measures targeting the most serious breaches of social distancing restrictions.


Fines for repeatedly not wearing face coverings where mandated will be significantly increased in the coming weeks, and on the spot fines for hosting or facilitating illegal gatherings of more than 30 people will be introduced.


The announcement comes as a number of remaining aspects of England’s culture, sport, leisure and business sectors will be permitted to reopen from this weekend. Two weeks ago the ONS had expressed concerns about a slight increase in the number of people in England testing positive. The situation now appears to have levelled off.


The plan set out in the ‘roadmap to recovery’ which was paused for two weeks will resume from Saturday 15 August in England – except for specific areas where local restrictions are in place.


Taking into account new evidence provided by SAGE and consultation with industry, the Government has also confirmed today that all staff offering close contact services, including hairdressers, should now wear a face mask (type 2 surgical), in addition to a clear visor that covers the face. This will help protect the customer and staff from respiratory droplets caused by sneezing, coughing, or speaking.


The guidance also applies to businesses that operate remotely, such as massage therapists working in people’s homes, and those learning in vocational training environments.


The Government will continue to review these measures announced today, which are based upon the very latest infection rates.


More detail on the new enforcement measures will be set out in the coming week.


Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:

Most people in this country are following the rules and doing their bit to control the virus, but we must remain focused and we cannot be complacent. That is why we are strengthening the enforcement powers available to use against those who repeatedly flout the rules.
At every stage, I have said our plan to reopen society and the economy is conditional and that it relies on continued progress against the virus.
Today, we are able to announce some further changes which will allow more people to return to work and the public to get back to more of the things they have missed. However, as I have always said, we will not hesitate to put on the brakes if required or to continue to implement local measures to help to control the spread of the virus.
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